Toute position inscrite est une position conquise. (Every inscribed position is a conquered position.)Marcel Griaule, Les Saô légendaries, 66.
I suppose I could do worse than to begin by answering the following question: Why is a feminist literary theorist discussing accounting in a book written by economists interrogating the natural? In August 1991, I had the dubious honor of being present in a room full of two thousand academic accountants at the Opryland Hotel in Nashville, Tennessee, listening, not to Johnny Cash or Waylon Jennings, but to the distinguished economist Rudiger Dornbusch and his keynote speech to the American Accounting Association on the future of the global economy. Though Dornbusch understandably left out the feminist literary angle, he too felt compelled to address the accounting–economics relationship at the beginning of his talk, and did so by saying, essentially, that the only thing factual that economists talked about was accounting information – everything past that was mere theory.
A ripple of unease with the speaker's ignorance filtered through the large audience as, theoretically aware or not, the assembled accountants noted to themselves how wrong he was, since every accounting number ever produced has been, to say the least, highly contestable. What Dornbusch revealed in his off-the-cuff remark was that accounting had achieved, at least in the eyes of certain major economists, the ultimate goal of the rhetorician's art: to be perceived as not rhetoric at all.